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30 Jan 2002
The 2001B semester has come to a close. Although no science observations could be completed, we have made progress towards our goal of starting regular science operations with NIRI.
10 April 2002
12 July 2002
Semester 2002A has now ended for NIRI. Our terrible luck with the weather continued through the last night of NIRI observations, and only a handful of the 41 assigned nights were useful for science observations. We did complete some observations for 15 queue programs. The data we have taken look quite good, although some were taken during poorer weather conditions than we would have liked. The data are now being distributed on CD ROM to the PIs. See the schedules pages for more information on a given program.
12 September 2002
The NIRI maintenance work has now been completed and NIRI has been tested cold in the lab. All the mechanisms are moving and the new bushings are working well. In addition to the preventative maintenance, we also installed the new Shack-Hartmann roof prism in the on-instrument wavefront sensor optics. We look forward to using the 2x2 spot pattern to correct for fast tip-tilt and focus in the coming months. The NIRI science-channel camera optics were realigned and the pupil alignment is nearly identical to that before the shutdown.
24 September 2002
7 October 2002
31 Jan 2003
NIRI has been working well recently. NIRI queue observing is scheduled to start 13 Feb 2003. Phase II proposals should be sent to the national project offices for checking as soon as possible (see the 2003A special instructions for deadlines and submission details).
Peripheral wavefront sensor #1 (PWFS1) had a mechanical problem recently and was removed from the telescope for repairs and optical adjustment. Phase II proposals should therefore not request PWFS1 until further notice.
19 Jun 2003
We recently completed the last scheduled NIRI observing block for semester 2003A. The weather cooperated and we consistently achieved 0.3 arcsec images using PWFS2. We were able to complete about 90% of the queue Band 1 observations.